Elemental Wizards Tour
Greyson Fletcher and Chris Gregson have been filming with each other for years. After their trip last year filming for Greyson’s Thrasher part, it only made sense to get the crew back together and make an official collab board between the Element and Blood Wizard teams. In the van we had Greyson, Chris, Jerry Gurney, Jack Given, Tom Schaar, Shea Cooper, Fletcher Renegar and Jacopo Carozzi. Anakin Senn met up with us in Boise and Matt Ward captained the ship, making sure that metal was blasting from the speakers at all times. By the time we made it to the Utah border we must have burned through the entire King Diamond discography. Twice. —Ben Karpinski
First stop of the trip was Salt Lake City. We made it to the sk801 house and as soon as Jack and Jerry saw the band room we lost them for the remainder of the night, only for them to emerge in the morning with two new songs ready to be played in the van
The next day we warmed up at the South Jordan park before trying our luck in the streets. Tom Schaar, FSA from the hip into the pocket
Shea Cooper, front board around the bend
We wound up at a sketchy bank to ledge with an over head-high drop. Jacopo, slappy crooks
Jerry yanked in a nose grind and took the drop, resulting in the first hot pocket of the trip. Like clockwork, as soon as his heel began to swell we got word of an empty pool across town
We barged the fence of the apartment complex, hoping to get five minutes and lucked out with 20. Jack Given, catching some coping
Greyson, back D
Gregson easily cleared one of the loveseats…
…and then reeled in the front blunt before we got the boot
Don’t feel too bad for Jerry. He got a message from a skater at a local brewery saying he had over 100 beers for the crew and wanted to drop them off. One of the countless perks to having the instagram handle @givemefreebeers
We tried to hit as many parks as we could between Salt Lake City and Boise. With Grindline and Dreamland building most of the parks in the state, we had plenty of options. It’s crazy driving into some of these really small towns and seeing some of the biggest and best skateparks on the planet. I wonder how many of the 8,000 residents have scratched the coping at Hailey? With some of the walls topping 15 feet, it seems as if they are out for blood. At least that was the case for Tom Schaar. After blasting a few airs, Chris asked him if he wanted to film one in a follow line around the park. Tom obliged and after landing his air tried to noseblunt a steep bank in the big bowl, hanging up at the top and flying all the way to flat. It was one of the most brutal slams I had ever seen and I thought we were surely heading straight to the hospital. But Tom bounced back, taking it like a champ and making it out of the bowl with only a gash on his chin. He even let Shea and Chris super glue his chin back together rather than going to the ER. The Blood Wizards were starting to rub off on him
Tom Schaar, low to really high
“Down to get one in a line?”
Anatomy of “Are You Alright?”
Nothing a little super glue won’t fix
Good as new
After getting everyone out of Hailey in one piece we headed to Ketchum. We arrived at night but the park looked too good to wait ‘til morning to skate, so we pulled out the lights and the generator and lit up the big bank. Greyson had too many road sodas on the ride and slept it off in the grass while everyone else sessioned until we ran out of gas. Jack, no comply bluntslide
Shea knew a few places to camp in town so we opted for the one with the giant treehouse
Morning breath, Chris and Masher
Tom, alley oop to fakie 50-50
Jacopo, frontisde fastplant
Greyson, low to high front crook
Getting closer to Boise we stopped by the Kuna skatepark. The park was fun but we couldn’t help but notice the giant dirt bmx track next door. Chris had a set of OJ cruisers with him and with the help of a leaf blower we instantly doubled the size of the skatepark.
Heel bruise be damned! Jerry strikes back with a boneless
Shea got his back across the track
Leaf-blower shotgun? Is that an NBD?
The main reason for this trip was making it to Boise for the grand opening of the Rhodes skatepark and the new Element store that was opening next to it. The rest of the Element team was meeting up and there was a big demo planned over the weekend. Shea is originally from Boise and lined it up for all of us to stay at his buddy Blake’s place, complete with a perfect bowl in the backyard.
Gregson, morning warm up
While our crew packed the living room or set up tents by the bowl, the rest of the Element guys got an Air BnB across town. We were cracking jokes saying we were the B team until we heard Nyjah got flown in and got his own hotel, bumping us down to the C team. Lodging jokes aside, it was a blast to meet up with everyone midway through our trip. It was sort of like a trip within a trip: hitting skate spots three vans deep and having a park like Rhodes that is so big you can be skating with 30 bros and still feel like you have the place to yourself.
Lunatic Fringer Tyson Peterson, backside 5-0
C Team antics
Appleyard, crooked grind
Jerry, most likely talking about big drops and heel bruises
Anakin Senn, Smith grind
Nothing but love for Shea
Shea landed the front board shove it right as a cop pulled up
Turned out he just wanted to watch the sesh. You just never know
It seemed like half the state of Idaho made it out for the demo. There were different local news channels covering the event and the mayor even made it out for a meet and greet. At the end of the four-hour signing, Blood Wizard surprised Jerry with his first pro-model board. They caught him completely off guard. Afterwards, there was a party for him at Prestige Skateshop in downtown Boise where they premiered his pro part to a packed house.
We left Boise and headed to Sisters, Oregon. We rolled into town with barely enough time to grab beer at a gas station and headed to the skatepark to set up camp. It was pitch black as we pulled off the main road. Luckily, we caught the park’s cradle in our headlights. We hopped the curb and drove along the fence, hoping to set up our tents somewhere not so visible. As we got out of the van, I couldn’t help but notice broken trees and odd stacks of logs all around us. We figured we were in the woods and after exploring the park with our cell phones decided to pull our tents as close to the fence as possible, not knowing what was out there.
When we woke up we all had a good laugh, realizing that we were camped in the middle of a disc-golf course. Thankfully, we woke up before any golfers arrived. After heading into town for breakfast, we made it back to the park and had the place all to ourselves. Gurney lays one back on top of the cradle
Anakin, front blunt
Jack Given takes it all the way to the pool coping
Greyson getting comfy in the cradle
Wizard staff or tripod?
Chris, alley oop frontside flip over the hip
From Sisters we headed to Portland, checking out a few parks along the way. Andy Adams was kind enough to let all eight of us sleep in his basement. After a big night on the town we felt we should end our last full day of the trip with a barbeque. Lucky for us, Andy’s friend Jessica had a bowl in her backyard and was more than down for the idea of grilling. Jack, crailslide
Sorry, Chris, no veggie dogs
Gregson, nosegrind stalefish at Newburg
Greyson ending the day with a one foot
We woke up early to head home but had one last spot in mind. Shea and Fletch wanted to hit the classic two-rail spot in Eugene. Everyone got their lines and street Greyson even made an appearance. Shea, layback front board
Fletcher Renegar, switch back lip
Matt powered the drive the whole way back home and I had time to catch up with Greyson and Chris.
If either of you guys could steal a rider from the other team, who would it be?
Chris: I’d pick Greyson.
Greyson: Either Gregson or Jerry. Sorry, Gregson.
Which team do you think got more tricks, Element or Blood Wizard?
C: It was pretty close. Greyson and Jack both got a lot of stuff.
G: Yeah, it’s a toss up. I’d say half and half.
Which team drank the most beers?
C: Blood Wizard did for sure.
G: Yeah, they got us beat on that one.
Which team would win in a fight?
G: Are we talking just the guys from the trip or the entire Element team? ‘Cause if it’s just the trip, I only have Tom Schaar and Fletcher.
C: We would win, for sure. There were five of us and you had Tom.
G: I don’t know about that one. I still think I would win.
C: Yeah, you personally. That’s not really a team effort. I’m going with Blood Wizard.
Who was the MVP of the trip?
C: Jack and Greyson.
G: I was going to say Jack so I think that makes him the official MVP.
Who was the biggest pile?
G: For sure, Jerry.
C: Jerry. He earned it, though. He got broke off and turned pro on this trip.
Who blew it the hardest?
C: Tom, because he left halfway through the trip to go to a contest.
G: Yeah, he blew it, for sure.
Best stop of the trip?
G: The Ketchum Park was really fun. Watching Tom fall from 20 feet up in the air was pretty cool too.
C: I can’t pinpoint a single stop.
G: Fletcher’s switch back lip was insane to watch.
C: That’s what I was going to say too. The whole line.
Worst skatepark of the trip?
G: Whatever one had that weird ski jump. Kuna?
C: For me it was Burnside just ‘cause I had Masher with me and that dude was trying to light a propane tank on fire so I had to get him out of there.
G: That was my favorite. Ha!
Best place we stayed at?
C: Holland’s place in Salt Lake. That’s where all the songs were made.
G: We stayed with so many awesome people. I just want to thank Holland, Blake and Andy.
Would you guys do this trip again?
C: Of course. It’s a no-brainer.
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